My Google+ Top 5 Wish list for Circles
By Stuart Butler
Jul, 18, 2011
Let me start by telling you that I am a huge fan of Google+. I think it's potentially the biggest disruptor we've seen in the Internet world for a very long time. I plan on writing more about Google+ in the upcoming weeks, but for this article, i want to focus on some specific suggestions I have for improving Circles.
Inner Circles - this one is a point of debate amongst our staff. It's about 50-50 between those who really want this feature, and those who think it's a waste of time. I would love to be able to segment a larger group into multiple sub groups.
Example:.I could have a Circle called "Co-Workers who like Cheese" and another called "Co-Workers who don't like Cheese". I would then have a larger Circle, named "Co-workers", which would contain both sub-groups. If I wanted to write something to the Stilton lovers in the office, I could do so without alienating the lactose intolerant folks.
Public Circles - there's a lot I want to share. Some of it is educational and entertaining; Some of it resembles the mad ramblings of a deranged Orangutan. If I had the option to make specific Circles public or not, then people could "subscribe" to specific content as they see fit.
Example: I write a lot about Star Wars and I know which of my close friends are interested in the topic. But what if some random acquaintance, say George Lucas decides that he wants to partake in some Jedi-related banter with me. He should be able to see that I have a Public Circle to which I publish musing related to a galaxy far, far away, and he should be able to choose to have those specific posts appear in his Stream.
Blocked Circles - when I post some amazing revelation to the world, wouldn't it be cool if I could post it to everyone EXCEPT one or more specific Circles, as opposed to having to check all of the Circles that I do want to send it to.
Example: If I knew that a small minority of my "Friends" Circle have a small kleptomania problem. I could add them to a Circle called "Dodgy Friends" (You know who you are). Now when I'm on vacation in Bora Bora and want to post a picture, I can do so to everyone one that I trust, without fear of the dodgy people in my life coming to my house and stealing my collection of Twilight memorabilia.
Improved Suggestions - when I go to Find and Invite and look at the suggestions. I wonder whether or not a trained monkey wrote the algorithm. It's just not very good. In order to weed out the people with whom I have no affiliation, I'd like the roll-over preview to contain more relevant information. At least show me Occupation/Employment and friends in conman for goodness sake. Possibly even some sort of rating as to how much they post and where it falls on the "This enriches my life" to "Why am I reading this drivel" scale.
Integration with other Networks - the Yahoo and Hotmail integration is nice and easy. But it would be even better if Circles integrated with more systems. There are ways around it, but I wish I didn't have to create a Yahoo account in order to import my uncle Nigel and his garden gnome anecdotes from my Facebook contacts. They should at least integrate with Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and MySpace (if nothing else, so that Justin Timberlake doesn't feel left out)
OK, nothing too major, but I swear these changes would make my life a little easier. At the end of the day, making me happy is what Google should be trying to do, right?
So Kelly Ellis and the rest of the Google+ team take note. I'm sure these changes shouldn't take more than a couple of hours for you Genius folks at Google.